Leaving those adorable beavers behind, our next stop in Quebec was hard to pronounce (at least, in my experience 😄) Outaouais.
More specifically, in Outaouais we stayed in Gatineau, a city right next to Canada’s capital city of Ottawa (like literally across the river – you can see the Parliament of Canada from here!)
*Took me a while to get there but just in case you find it handy when you visit, Outaouais is kinda pronounced; Ooot-away.
Anyhooo, we arrived in Gatineau in the evening and just decided to kick back for the rest of the day. Our biggest plans for the evening were to grab dinner which, seeing as we had no driving left to do that day, meant that somewhere with decent cocktail beckoned.
For dinner, we headed over to Les Vilains Garçons for some absolutely delicious food and much-appreciated cocktails.
I even got my hands on some of that delicious ice wine we had back when we were in Toronto a few months prior.
The food was absolutely delicious too! Sooo soooo good! Definitely recommend visiting when you’re in Gatineau.
With that, we called it a day, eager to go to bed early as we’d managed to cram in a lot of plans for the next day – a lot which meant hopping across the river to Ottawa.
I can’t actually remember what I did or had for breakfast the next morning – we were so eager to get over to Ottawa that everything till we got to the boat dock to catch the Au feel de l’eau electric Aqua-Taxi just went by in a blur!
For the boat over the river, it’s more of an in-demand thing.
If the boat is at your end of the river then all you have to do is hop on but if it isn’t, you call up and they’ll come over to pick you. It makes sense really, so it’s not doing unnecessary crossings with no one in it (like it would have to if it had a schedule to stick to).
To be honest, you could also technically walk over the bridge if you fancied a bit of a jaunt or even just hop on a taxi ride over too.
Anyhoo, off we went on the boat to Ottawa (sounds like we went on some long journey – the boat ride is like 5 minutes or so). Our first stop in Ottawa would be the Parliament of Canada – which we’d pre-arranged a tour for.
After a quick security search, we got into the Parliament building and boy is it impressive inside!
Like I kinda expected it to be but was still blown away by not just how pretty it was but also how we were walking through halls where some of Canada’s more modern history was made.
One place you have to check out when you’re here though is the library! It’s a thing of beauty!
You can’t actually just go traipsing through it – it’s still a working library after all but you do get access to it on the tour and get to marvel at it, even if for just a short while.
Oh, another place with checking out while you’re here is the tower. It’s supposed to have an amazing view over the city and so with that, we hopped into the lift and made our way to the top.
Alas, it was the foggiest of mornings so our view looked like this… 😄
Giving up, we made our way back down where all of a sudden, the alarms started going off sending everyone into a bit of a tizzy!
Well, everyone except those who actually worked there who seemed strangely calm, given the situation. I think it might have been a fire alarm; practice or real, I have no idea but figured we wouldn’t be sticking around to find out.
Thankfully, our tour was over by then so we got to see everything we wanted (and indeed, could) so happily left knowing that.
Soon after leaving, a familiar rumbling in my tummy reminded me that it was time for lunch and with that, we headed over to Pure Kitchen for some vegan and vegetarian delights.
Okay, so typically, I’m not much for vegan or vegetarian food but I’d heard such great things about this place that I figured it was worth giving it a try and boy were they right!
I’d love to eat more vegetarian/vegan meals but had been so disappointed in the past that I figured it perhaps wasn’t for me and places like Pure Kitchen totally challenge that for me! I’m very much of a mindset that food is meant to be enjoyed. It’s not cerebral – you don’t have to overthink it, it’s more instinctive – you eat it and you like it and I very much liked this! *licks lips*
The restaurant as well is pretty sweet and there’s even a cool bar upstairs worth checking out when you’re in town!
Fed, watered and thoroughly coffees, we hit the streets of Ottawa with an extra skip in our steps, eager to see more of what the city had in store. 😀
More on that in the next post.